Colour, Tone and Composition
Tutor: David Chen
Value Contrast: Colour in Composition
When most artists think of composition they think about where they place objects in a painting or drawing. Once you arrange your objects however, there is more to consider. The values and their contrasts compared to each other will also help to create relationships within a painting, so you need to decide the values of dark to light and warm to cool colours.
When you are working out the arrangement of objects in a painting you also need to start thinking about how these colours will look, as far as what colours they are, how that colour relates to the objects near it, and the tonal values of all these colours. This means that you do not spread the one colour all over the painting and expect it to work, and a lot of thinking and planning goes into a successful arrangement.
To prevent a work looking ‘disunited’ or unbalanced, or flat, these things need to be worked out at the same time you decide where each item is to go in your painting. You as the artist decide how your work will eventually look. You do not need to slavishly copy nature – we have cameras for recording things as they are, it is your job, and delight, to interpret what you see, and move, delete, rearrange and colour correct to create your own vision.